Giving Square some much-needed competition, Mophie and Intuit have partnered to come out with their own portable credit card payment solution for the iPhone. Mophie, the renowned iPhone case/battery pack maker, will take care of the hardware side while Intuit will provide the software for the system.
Unlike Square’s offering which is free, this one isn’t. The whole package cost $179 and there’s a $12.95 monthly fee. Transaction fees range from a low of $0.30 to a high of $0.34, which is a stark contrast to the $0.15 fee of Square. On the good side, however, they’ll only be getting a small percentage from payments, 1.7% for credit card swipes and 2.7% for keyed-in transactions to be exact, as opposed to Square who has a higher rate of 2.75% and 3.5% respectively. So, as you can see, it has its own set of pros and cons working for and against it.
One thing that's definitely not in its favor is its limited availability. Since the credit card reader is in the form of an iPhone case, it won’t easily work with just any iPhone. The current version is only compatible the iPhone 3G/S though they did give an assurance that an iPhone 4-friendly variant is being developed and will be released soon. How soon it'll be released is still anybody's guess. Square's version, meanwhile, can work with any iPhone as it simply connects to the 3.5mm jack.
Will Mophie and Intuit’s offering be enough of a success to give Square a run for their money? Only time will tell, but if there’s one thing we certainly appreciate here is that, at least now, we have a choice. You can read the full press release here.